Types of patio door locks

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When you get a quote for a home insurance policy, insurers ask what lock types you have on your home's outside doors or patio windows.

In some cases, having a greater level of security could mean you get a discount off your normal insurance costs.

A patio opens onto a garden 


During your home insurance application, you should be asked what kind of locks you have on your sliding patio doors.

This helps insurance providers assess your property’s security levels.

Let’s take a look at how you spot each of the different patio door lock types.


There are 3 main types of patio door lock. If you don’t have any of these, choose 'other lock type' when you get a quote – and consider upgrading your home security.

Central rail key-operated lock

This is a multi-point locking system that's fitted to the central rail where the doors overlap. It’s got a long, slim lock fitting.

A central rail key-operated lock offers greater security than basic locks and could give you a discount on the cost of your home insurance.

(TICK) Secures the door at multiple points

(CROSS) Not as secure as a key-operated multi-point locking system

Key-operated multi-point locking system

This is a rim-locking system that bolts the patio door into the frame at multiple points. With 1 turn of the key all points should lock simultaneously. It offers an even higher level of security than central rail key-operated locks.

(TICK) With up to 5 locking points it’s harder for intruders to force the door

(TICK) Only needs 1 key cylinder - A key cylinder helps open or close the lock. The cylinder is a cylindrical component that houses a series of spring-loaded pins.

(TICK) Cylinders easy to upgrade or change

(CROSS) To properly secure the door, the handle must be raised and double locked

The process might be fiddly for those who are unfamiliar with the door and its locking mechanism. Most new patio door suppliers include either of these locks with their products as standard. In addition to cheaper home insurance these secure locks should also give you greater peace of mind.

Top and bottom key-operated lock

This is the most basic type of patio door lock. As the name suggests, you should notice these locks because they bolt into the top and bottom of the frame.

These locks aren’t as secure as central rail operated locks and key-operated multi-point locking systems. So they’re unlikely to get you a discount on your home insurance. If you have these types of locks, it’s worth considering an upgrade to boost your security.

(TICK) Tends to be a cheaper option than the more robust patio door locks

(CROSS) The door is likely to be weaker in the middle, leaving it vulnerable to a break in


If you're still looking for more ways to bring the price down, here are a few tips:

  • Invest in additional security devices to burglar-proof your home.
  • Make sure your garage, shed, garden and outbuildings are equally protected.
  • Consider fitting a burglar alarm to ward off opportunistic thieves.
  • Always compare home insurance quotes from different providers.

For more information, check out our guide on how to cut your home insurance costs.

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